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Jemimah included in 17-member squad for South Africa; Raj to lead

The Indian women's cricket team (Image credit- India Today)

New Delhi: Seventeen-year-old Jemimah Rodrigues would have the opportunity to showcase her talent at the highest level after she was named in the 17-member squad of the Indian women’s cricket team who are scheduled to tour South Africa for  a three-match ODI series beginning on February 5.

Rodrigues, a right-handed batswoman has been one of India’s brightest prospects in women’s cricket as she has been in top form, amassing 1013 runs from 11 matches, which includes six centuries in the women’s U-19 one-day league and knockout tournament. It was just last year when she powered her way to a 163-ball 200 against Saurashtra in the U-19 Super League.

The team would continue to be led by the charismatic Mithali Raj, under whom the Indian eves reached the final of the women’s World Cup last year in July where they lost to hosts England by an agonizing margin of nine runs. Raj herself had made her debut at 17 in 1999 against Ireland and currently, she is the highest run-getter in the history of women’s ODI cricket.

Harmanpreet Kaur, the dashing right-hander would be Raj’s deputy for the tour. The Indian squad also comprises of the likes of the experienced Jhulan Goswami, who is the leading wicket-taker in women’s ODI cricket. Goswami is expected to lead the attack. Also, this would be the Indian women’s first assignment since the world cup last year.

However, the Indian squad for the five-match T20I series would be announced later, a BCCI press release read. This tour to South Africa will signal the beginning of the ICC Women’s Championship (2017-2020) for India. The team would play a warm-up match in Bloemfontein on February 2 before they head to the first match in Kimberley on February 5.

The second match too would be played in Kimberley on February 7 and the third in Potchefstroom on February 10.

India Women’s ODI squad: Mithali Raj (Captain), Harmanpreet Kaur (vice-captain), Sushma Verma (wicket-keeper), Ekta Bisht, Smriti Mandhana, Poonam Yadav, Punam Raut, Rajeshwari Gayakwad, Jemimah Rodrigues, Jhulan Goswami, Deepti Sharma, Shikha Pandey, Mona Meshram, Pooja Vastrakar, Veda Krishnamurthy, Taniya Bhatia (wicket-keeper).

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